At least 30 BJP MPs have written to Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani on the issue of holding a second shift in private schools affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE).
The parliamentarians said that if permission was given to private schools to hold second shifts on their premises, education will become accessible in educationally backward rural areas with the available infrastructure.
These parliamentarians, including Varun Gandhi, Poonam Mahajan and Santosh Kumar Ahlawat, cited rules and guidelines of the CBSE in support of their demand.
Clause 14 (B) of the affiliation rule book states that a CBSE - affiliated school can function in double shifts if it meets the minimum infrastructural criteria, the MPs said.
Rajasthan parliamentarian Devji Patel, who is leading the campaign, told IANS: "To make education easily accessible in educationally backward areas, especially rural India, private schools must be allowed to run the second shift. "
He said private schools had been meted out stepmotherly treatment in the matter.
"If permission is given to run the second shift in private schools, like some Kendriya Vidyalayas do, more students will be accommodated, " the letter said.
"There should be separate faculty and staff rooms for teachers for both the shifts.
Besides, there should be a gap of minimum half an hour between the two shifts, " the letter said.